By: Ayatullah al-Uzma Naser Makarem Shirazi

1- THE PHILOSOPHY OF THE REVELATION OF DIVINE BOOKS

WE BELIEVE that, for the guidance of man, God sent down several DIVINE BOOK, among which we may name:_ The SOHOF, given to NOAH; the LAW, given to Moses; the GOSPEL given to JESUS, and the Holy QURAN given to Mohammad. Were these books not sent, human would have been led astray, falling afar off from the natural path of piety, ethics, and straight path of truth. Such divine Books, like the clouds of mercy, have rained upon the plane of the hearts, making to truitful the seeds of knowledge, wisdom and virtues.

“The APOSTLE (MOHAMMAD) believes in that which is revealed to him from his LORD, and so do man of faith they all believe in ALLAH, His angels, His books, and in all His apostles. They say:_ “We make no distinction between any of the prophets.” They also say: “We hear the prophets and we obey.” Our LORD! we BEG Your forgiveness that to you ends all the road.” THE HOLY QURAN _ S2: 285

Unfortunately through long elapse of time, many of the scriptures have been tampered with, and altered to some extent, by the interference of some ignorant and unauthorized people, resulting in the replacement of some wrong thoughts and immoral ideas. Among these an exception is the Glorious Quran, which has remained unaltered and exactly is the same as it was; and It has always been shining like the bright sun, throughout the ages and the nations, alighting the hearts.

2- QURAN, IS THE GREATEST OF THE MIRACLES OF OUR PROPHET

WE BELIEVE that QURAN is the greatest and the most important one, among the many miracles of Islam’s prophet: Not only for its eloquence, fluency, vividness and expressiveness, but rather for other important aspects and wide dimensions of the book, about which broad descriptions have been given by the experts and commentators in their books. WE BELIEVE that no one can ever bring a book like the Holy QURAN, even not a chapter comparable to it! This is because, the Holy QURAN frequently asks the doubtful to do it if they can, and all who have endeavoured have failed! “Say:_ “If the whole of mankind and JINNS gather together to make out a book like this QURAN, they cannot do it even if they back up each other with help and support.”

THE HOLY QURAN _ S17: 88

“If you are in doubt of what we have revealed to our servant (Mohammad), then produce only one chapter comparable to this book; and call your witnesses or helpers to help you, if there are any besides Allah to assist you; if what you say be true. But if you fail to do so, and certainly you will fail, then fear the FIRE whose fuel is man and STONES prepared for the unbelievers THE HOLY QURAN _ S2: 23_24

WE BELIEVE that age will not make the Holy QURAN old and out of date; but rather its miraculous points and views shall appear more and more clearly, and its greatness shall become more evident to the world. We have a tradition narrated by Imam Jaafar Sadiq that:_ “God has not made QURAN to answer a certain age or distinct group of people. It shall always remain fresh, New, and lively.”

3- QURAَN IS NOT ALTERED AT ALL

WE BELIEVE that this book, _ (QURAN)_ which is now at the hands of the Muslims, is the exact and unaltered copy of that which was revealed to our prophet Muhammad _ nothing less and nothing more. A group of trustworthy scribes chosen by the prophet himself took note of the revelations from the very beginning up to the end, and Muslims had it a duty of must, to read and recite the verses by day and night. A large group of Muslims committed the book to memory and a group of them had it on the scrolls.

Those who had the book in their memory and those who could recite it for the others, had always had a very respectful position among the believer. Such customs and else, prevented the least amount of changes or any alteration to take place in the book. Besides that, God Himself has promised and guaranteed to look after His book and keep it safe and secure until the end.:– “We have without doubt, sent down the QURAN, and We will assuredly guard it.” THE HOLY QURAN _ S15_9

All the learned, and researcher of Islam, whether SHIITE or SUNNI, agree that the least alteration has not ever occurred in this Holy Book. Some literate persons discuss some rare and obscure tradition (HADITH) that may mean that some changes have taken place, but the highest majority of those who have the knowledge of Islam, reject that, taking it false and the mistake of some unaware commentators.

Such improvident who lack forethought, by such false ideas strike upon the validity of the most important DIVINE BOOK, in contrast to the belief of all the learned Muslims of different sects, which maintain that QURAN is unaltered for the least of words. These unwise friends, water the mills of the enemy through their ignorance, and bring into question the book which is sent by Allah, and has been promised to be guarded by Allah.

If we carefully study the ways that the book was revealed to the prophet and collected by the chosen scribes, and how it was guarded, written, memorized and recited by so many firm and true believers, no doubt remains as to any alteration or the change of even an epsilon in the whole work. On the other hand, of the imaginary or assumed Quran with some alteration, not ever a copy exists anywhere, or in any hand, so as to differ with the famous HOLY QURAN which all the Muslims hold as their SACRED DIVINE BOOK.

Today the Holy Quran is found in every house and in every library. Even those Qurans written several hundred years ago are kept in our MUSEUMS and those in the non Islamic countries, and no one can find the least differences in all the existing Qurans throughout the wide world. Today the roads to investigations are open to all, and anyone who doubts, may look for it himself and make sure that QURAN has not been altered for the least. “So announce glad tidings to My Servants _ to those who listen to My PRECEPTS, and follow what is the best in them. Those are the ones that Allah has guided and those are endued with understanding.”

THE HOLY QURAN _ S39: 17_18 Today, in our religious schools, the knowledge of QURAN is extensively taught, and one of the most important of our lessons in this field is the UNCHANGEABILITY OF QURAN.

4- QURAN AND THE SPIRITUAL AND PHYSICAL NEEDS OF HUMAN

WE BELIEVE that whatever is needed in SPIRITUAL AND PHYSICAL dimensions of man is fundamentally found in the holy QURAN. All the governmental and political tenets, all the social principles, the bases of symbiosis, the fundamentals of war and peace, the elements of judgements and economics, and whatever is needed, can be traced in the BOOK and taken out for use, so as to alight the space of human life:__ “And We have sent down to you the BOOK, explaining all things, It is a GUIDE, a Mercy, and Glad tidings to Muslims.” THE HOLY QURAN _ S16: 89

This is why WE BELIEVE that Islam is not APART of politics and diplomacy. This belief makes the Muslims to rule over themselves, so as to revive the precious Islamic values in their societies, leading towards justice and equity. A Muslim Must be just and fair to his enemy as he does justice to friends:_ “O, Believers! Stand up firmly to hold JUSTICE, and be as a witness to ALLAH, even against yourselves or your parents or your kins, and whether it be against rich or poor for God is preferable to all that. Follow not your lusts, lest you swerve. If you fail to do justice, verily Allah is aware of all that you do.” THE HOLY QURAN _ S4: 135

“O, BELIEVERS! Stand up firmly for the sake of Allah, and bear true witness, and let not the hatred for other men, turn you away from doing justice. Deal justly. Justice is nearer to PIETY. Have fear of Allah. He is aware of all that you do. THE HOLY QURAN _ S5: 8

5- RECITATION, CONTEMPLATION, AND ACTION

WE BELIEVE that the recitation of QURAN is the best of worship, because it inspires the reciter to think and to contemplate, by which actions may result. QURAN addressing the prophet says:_ “Keep vigil all the night (i.e. stand in prayer) except for a few hour,half the night, more or less; and with measured and.” rhythmic tone recite the QURAN.”

THE HOLY QURAN _ S73: 2_4 And addressing all the Muslims, QURAN has:_

“Read you the QURAN as much as you can.” THE HOLY QURAN _ S73: 24

“Do they not contemplate the QURAN, (so as to catch its meanings) or their hearts are locked up?” THE HOLY QURAN _ S47: 24

“And We have indeed made the QURَAَN, easy to understand and remember. Then is there anyone who may receive admonition?” THE HOLY QURAN _ S54: 17

“And QURAN is a book which We have revealed as a blessing: So follow it, and be righteous, so that you receive God’s Mercy.” THE HOLY QURAN _ S6: 158

Therefore those who read QURAN, without any contemplation, and action, lose a lot for ignoring two main, important elements (thought and act) and grasping only one. (reading)

6- THE DEVIATING DISCUSSIONS

WE BELIEVE that some mysterious hands have always tried to deviate and swerve Muslims from contemplation and thought over the verses of QURAN. The OMAYYED and BANIABBAS dynasties engaged the Muslims on void disputes, to answer the question whether QURAN is old or new!? Is it created or is eternally old as God!? Such prolong controversies divided the united Muslims into rival groups altercating and fighting each other. Today we know that thousands of bloods have been shed upon such arguments about nonsense, and quarrels for nothing! While any one with a common sense can answer that easily:_ If by QURطN, the paper and ink, the cover and the painting is meant, it is certainly created and is something new. On the other hand if by QURAN the meaning is the aim, it is certainly among the knowledge of God, and as the God’s Attributes are not apart of His substance, one may say that QURطN is as old as God Himself.

But the inhuman, merciless governors tried to keep Muslims busy on these useless subjects; and nowadays too, we see that the same thing and similar affairs happen in Muslim societies, so as to keep them aside of contemplation and thought.

7- RULES AND REGULATIONS OF COMMENTATING QURAN

WE BELIEVE that the words of QURAN should commonly be taken for their fundamental meanings and not for their connotations, with the exception of some, that clear reasons prove them to mean other ways. The verses in QURAN should never be commentated on the basis of conjectures or self interests. As an instance when we read in QURAN:_ “And he who was blind in this world, will be blind in the hereafter (next world), and most astray from the path.(of salvation) THE HOLY QURAN _ S17: 72

We are sure enough that blind in this verse does not mean, sightless. It rather means some one who has lost his sense of understanding and judgement, and not him who has lost his sense of vision. This is because there is many a blind one, who is virtuous and truthful, and on the contrary, there are many who can see well with their eyes, but who are out of mind and their hearts are locked up and cannot use even their common sense! As another example we may consider the following verse about the enemies of Islam:_ “The parable of those who reject faith is that of a man (i.e. the prophet) who calls an animal that can hear nothing except a shout or cry. DEAF, dumb and blind are they, and void of wisdom. (they understand nothing) THE HOLY QURAN _ S2: 171

It is evident that those heretics, who are addressed here, were not deaf, dumb or blind. We then may conclude that they were mentally such. Therefore when we read in Qur’an such verses that:_ “The HANDS of God are widely out stretched. THE HOLY QURAN S5: 67 OR

“O,NOAH! Construct the ark under OUR EYES.” S11: 37 We don’t understand that God has physical hand or eye. We rather take hand to mean GOD’S POWER and the EYE to mean HIS KNOWLEDGE. This is because any material or matter consists of parts and needs time and space, as well as direction and is of course perishable. God the Almighty is far Greater and clear of having such attributes. We never take the fundamental meaning of such words as mentioned above which is not reasonable. “We sent not any Apostle, except to teach in the language of his own people, in order to clear things for them.” THE HOLY QURAN _ S14: 4

8- THE DANGER OF SELF COMMENTARIES

WE BELIEVE that self commentary of QURAN (i.e. to use one’s own views and interests in comments) is a very dangerous programme in relation to QURAN, and of course one of the few DEADLY SINS. Through a tradition God says:_

“He who commentates any words with his own views and self interest does not believe in Me!” Evidently had he been a believer, he would not commentate the words of God to accord with his lusts and conjectures. In many important books among which we may name SAHIH TIRMIDHI page 304: It is written that the prophet has said:_ “He who commentates QURAN by his fancies, and on the basis of self interest, or what he knows not, he should prepare himself to join the Fire of HELL.”

By self commentary we mean to describe or explain the Quranic verses by one’s own point of view. Such a commentator is not a follower of Quran, He rather tries to make Quran to follow his caprices and conjectures. If the gates of self commentaries be kept open to Quran, the sacred Book will lose importance and soon will be of no value among all, because every one could then seek to compare and conform his false ideas to Quran, as an evidence to prove.

Self commentary is also in contrast with the accepted rules and regulations of Arabic literature and linguistics,. The likening of QURAN’S verses to one’s fancies and conjectures will cause deviation and swerving in the straight path of the book. Self commentary consists of several branches, among which, to USE OUR the self interests is one. To make it short, as the unreasonable grasp of the fundamental meaning of the words may lead to deviation from the truth, so is self commentary,; both ways will keep the believer far apart from the excellent commandments and blessfull teaching of the Glorious Quran.

9- THE PROPHET’S METHODICAL WAY, (SUNNAT) IS TAKEN FROM THE BOOK OF GOD. (The QURAN)

WE BELIEVE that no one should say the Book of God is enough for our guidance, ignoring the true traditions that we have received as to what the prophet said or how he behaved. For these traditions may serve to explain the realities, and clear the meanings of some of the more difficult verses in the Book to show us better the roots and branches of our religion. This is because Quran has declared that the words, and the methodical ways (SUNNAT) of the prophet should serve as an example for us; as that of the God’s.

“….. So take whatever the Apostles assigns to you, and deny yourselves that which he withholds from you, and fear Allah, for Allah is strict in punishment.” THE HOLY QURAN _ S59: 7

“It is not becoming to a believer, whether man or woman, when a matter has been decided by Allah and by His Apostle, to have any option. If anyone disobeys Allah and His Apostle he is on a clearly wrong path.” THE HOLY QURAN _ S33: 36 “He (i.e. Muhammad) does not speak out of his own fancy, His speech is none except that which is inspired to him from God. (i.e. what he says is none but inspired revelation)

THE HOLY QURAN _ S53: 2_3

Those who are indifferent to the SUNNAT of the prophet are in fact ignoring QURAN and the inspired REVELATION. Of course whatever is related to the prophet must be clearly proved: That, it really is said by the prophet, and it is not forged. We cannot easily accept whatever is ascribed to the prophet to be truly of Him! Imam Ali in one of his speeches WHICHIS collected in the famous book, named NAHJOL BALAGHEH was said, “So many lies were forged and ascribed to the prophet. So much so that one day he got up and said to an audience. `He who ascribes a lie to me should prepare himself to take his place in the Fire of Hell.'”

A similar tradition is also written in the famous book SAHIH BUKHARI volume one; page 38.

10- THE IMAM) METHODICAL WAY (SUNNAT)

WE BELIEVE that the traditions and orders of the innocent Imams are all taken from the prophet, through their fathers, and are all to be obeyed. There is a famous tradition related by successive witnesses:_ “I have left among you two heavy things to prevent you being misled:_ The Book of Allah and my nearest KINS.”( SAHIH TIMIDHI_ volume 5 _ P.662) On the other hand, whatever the saints have said, are narrations from the prophet: The prophet foresaw the future and to solve its problems, laid the key in the hands of his nearest kins, and THE BOOK OF ALLAH; and how can a true Muslim ignore such a firm and important Hadith? If the above tradition was considered precisely, our present difficulties in faith, comments, and the disputes in jurisprudence, would not exist.

Source: www.alhassanain.com


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